SOLD FOR: $3375
Model: 52 C Sporting
Serial Number: 90253C
Year of Manufacture: 1956
Caliber: .22 Long Rifle
Action Type: Bolt Action Rifle fed by Detachable Magazine
Barrel Length: 24″
Sights / Optics: The front sight is a hooded beaded blade dovetailed atop a serrated ramped base fixed to the barrel. The left-rear of the receiver is drilled, tapped and filled for a receiver sight (none present). The top of the receiver is drilled and tapped with two-piece bases and rings holding a Leupold VX-II 3-9x Rimfire E.F.R. Scope with duplex reticle. The scope has light handling marks and clear glass.
Stock Configuration & Condition: The stock is a one-piece walnut with a pistol grip, a monte-carlo comb with cheekpiece, and a checkered steel buttplate. It features the checkering on both sides of the forestock, as well as the three checkered “diamonds” on the forestock’s bottom. The pistol grip has a steel cap and the forend has an ebony nose cap. Sling plates are inlaid and screwed to the belly and the forend with Winchester Super-Grade sling swivels (standard width – 1”) installed. The stock has only a few scattered minor marks. The checkering is sharp. There are no chips or cracks. The LOP measures 13 1/2” from the front of the trigger to the back of the buttplate. The buttplate’s checkering is well defined with no notable wear. Overall, the stock is in Excellent condition as refinished.
Type of Finish: Blued
Finish Originality: Refinished
Bore Condition: The bore is bright, with sharp rifling. There is no erosion in the bore. In this writer’s opinion, the bore rates 10 out of 10.
Overall Condition: This rifle retains about 98% of its current metal finish. There are only a few minor marks, mostly on the bottom metal, and minor operational wear. The screw heads range from sharp to lightly tool marked with strong slots. The markings are generally clear, the edges are soft on the receiver markings and the barrel markings are a little shallow. Overall, this rifle is in about Excellent condition as refinished.
Mechanics: The action functions correctly. The trigger is light and crisp. There is a pull and over travel adjustment screw ahead of the trigger guard. We have not fired this rifle. As with all used firearms, a thorough cleaning may be necessary to meet your maintenance standards.
Box, Paperwork & Accessories: This rifle comes with a single 5-round magazine and the installed scope as described.
Our Assessment: From its inception, Winchester had something special in mind for their Model 52. This rifle was never intended to be a typical .22 long rifle plinker, but rather a world class firearm that just happened to be chambered in a rimfire caliber. Fit and finish was comparable to a fine European sporting rifle, and a simple walk through the woods in search of small game with the Model 52 in hand could evoke the same emotions one might experience when hunting Africa’s fabled “Big 5,” only without fear of being stampeded or mauled! A great shooter then and now, accuracy rivaled its competitors; rest assured, the Model 52 would more than hold up its end of the bargain in any target shooting competition. The Model 52 underwent several changes throughout its 60-year production run, with mechanical and design alterations designated by different suffixes. Field & Stream, among the most respected hunting and fishing magazines ever published, called the Winchester Model 52 “one of the 50 best guns ever made.”
During the wartime hiatus the Post-War Production Recommendation Committee proposed that when Model 52 manufacture resumed, the poorly received Style B trigger should be replaced with a completely new design. In the event, Winchester returned to the 52B when the war ended, but in the meantime an extensive scientific study of lock mechanisms was undertaken. The result was Harry Sefried’s two-lever Micro-Motion trigger, introduced in 1951. Adjustable for pull-weight between 2.5 and 6 lbs, and travel between .030 and an almost imperceptible .003 inches, the Micro-Motion was an instant success and considered the new state-of-the-art in-match rifle trigger locks.
This model 52C Sporting has been quite skillfully restored, in Excellent condition and looking gorgeous, specially for its age. The rifle is equipped with a Leupold Rimfire scope as well as a set of Wincheste Super-Grade sling swivels. It retains a great bore and strong mechanics, so it should still be a great shooter. It’s also a good looking rifle that will fit right in a collection of Winchester or rimfire sporting rifles. Please see our photos and good luck!
Please forgive any typos, I was educated in California. -Bud